|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make it his policy to seek the establishment of a procedure to remove the new full-time President of the European Council before their term of office expires if one or a specified number of member states feel this course of action is appropriate. 
Mr. Jim Murphy: The Government support a full-time President of the European Council, appointed for a mandate of two and a half years, renewable once. He or she will replace the current President of the European Council, who changes every six months. He or she will be chosen by Heads of State and Government by qualified majority, and will be accountable to them. The treaty of Lisbon provides that the European Council can end the President's term of office by a qualified majority in the event of an impediment or serious misconduct.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the Government's policy on the retrieval of bullion from HMS Sussex, with particular reference to Gibraltarian territorial waters. 
Mr. Jim Murphy: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my hon. Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence (Derek Twigg) to the hon. Member for Romford (Andrew Rosindell) on 7 March 2007, Official Report, column 1971W, and the reply given by the then Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence (Mr. Ivor Caplin) to my hon. Friend the Member for Hendon (Mr. Dismore) on 2 February 2005, Official Report, column 898W. I also refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my right hon. Friend the then Minister for Europe (Mr. Douglas Alexander) to the hon. Member for Hereford (Mr. Keetch) on 14 February 2006, Official Report, column 1902W, which states that the wreck, which we believe could be the Sussex, lies in the straits of Gibraltar outside British Gibraltar territorial waters in international waters.
Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what reports he has received of foreign contractors in Iraq having been arrested by the Iraqi authorities; and whether any UK individuals or companies are involved. 
Meg Munn: We do not receive reports of foreign contractors arrested by the Iraqi authorities. We are aware of one British national working for a private security company having been detained briefly in Iraq since March 2003.
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent representations he has made to the government of Iran on (a) the medical condition and (b) the need for specialist treatment of the imprisoned trade union leader, Mahmoud Salehi. 
Mahmoud Salehi, former head of the Trade Association of Saqez Bakery Workers and a well-known labour rights activist, has been arrested several times for activities relating to the trade association and mobilising the labour movement in Iran, and has been imprisoned since April 2007. We are deeply concerned by recent reports about his treatment
and health in prison. The EU Presidency, with strong UK support, raised concerns about Mr. Salehis situation in meetings with the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 1 May, 1 September and 10 October last year. More recently, on 5 December 2007, the EU Presidency raised specific concerns that Mr. Salehi had been ill treated in detention and denied access to suitable medical care. We will continue to raise Mr. Salehis case with the Iranian authorities, and urge Iran to honour its international human rights obligations and its commitments as a member of the International Labour Organisation, by respecting fully the right to freedom of expression and the right to form or join trade unions.
Sir Michael Spicer: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when a reply will be sent to the hon. Member for West Worcestershire's letter, dated 22 November 2007, on behalf of a constituent about the case of Mr. Craig Alden. 
Meg Munn: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office operates recycling schemes at its two London buildings, Old Admiralty Building and the Main Building in King Charles Street, and at its Hanslope Park site in Buckinghamshire. At these locations we recycle:
paper and cardboard;
cans and metal;
clear plastic cups;
Christmas cards; and
usable old furniture is given to charity for re-use.
Mr. Gale: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps Ministers (a) have taken and (b) are taking to protect the interests of UK citizens who have invested in business interests in Tanzania. 
Meg Munn: Where UK citizens seek help in protecting investments in Tanzania, our high commission in Dar es Salaam provides supportfor example, by providing information, by facilitating contacts with the Tanzanian authorities, or by lobbying on the investors' behalf. Ministers have sometimes lobbied as well.
Mr. Hague: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the answer of 19 November 2007, Official Report, column 566W, on Zimbabwe: sanctions to the hon. Member for East Devon, if he will list the Zimbabwean individuals who are not already subject to an EU travel ban and assets freeze that the UK has decided to exclude from the UK; and when these decisions were taken. 
David Miliband: It is not the Government's policy to comment on exclusions unless the individuals concerned have made their own exclusion public. Because he did so, we are able to confirm that Gideon Gono, Governor of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, was excluded from the United Kingdom by my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary on 17 August 2007. Prior to this, two other Zimbabwean nationals have been excluded under my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary's powers, but we cannot provide further details as the individuals concerned have chosen not to disclose the matter publicly.
Mr. Oaten: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the effect of requiring a restricted time frame to be imposed for spreading of slurry on voluntary agreements to avoid such work on weekends and bank holidays. 
Mr. Woolas [holding answer 7 January 2008]: The proposed closed period for organic manures with high available nitrogen, as set out in the consultation on implementation of the Nitrates Directive in England, reflects long-standing advice contained in Fertiliser Recommendations for Agricultural and Horticultural Crops (RB209) and the Code of Good Agricultural Practice for the Protection of Water. These publications advise that organic manures should be applied in late winter or spring as these are times of maximum crop growth and will optimise the use of nitrogen contained in the manure. This is particularly important for slurry which has a high available nitrogen content.
The Code of Good Agricultural Practice for the Protection of Air advises farmers to avoid spreading at weekends and bank holidays to reduce odour problems but suggests that this practice may be acceptable if a band spreader or an injector is used or the slurry has been treated. We expect farmers to continue following this good practice advice.
Bill Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether he intends to produce codes of conduct for (a) animal quarantine premises, (b) boarding kennels and (c) catteries under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. 
Jonathan Shaw: Government have already produced a code of practice for the welfare of dogs and cats in quarantine premises, and do not intend to produce a further code under the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
The Government are committed to repealing the Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963 and replacing it with regulations and a supporting code of practice for dog and cat boarding under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. During the passage of the 2006 Act through Parliament, dog and cat boarding was seen as a lower priority in comparison with other animal welfare matters and we have yet to establish any timescale for the regulations to be introduced.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many people employed in his Department work on administering EU structural funds; and what the cost of such staff was in 2006-07. 
Bill Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) pursuant to the answer of 5 December 2007, Official Report, column 1269W, on European Fisheries Fund, what discussions he has had with the European Commission on the UK's Operational Programme for the spending of the European Fisheries Fund; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what discussions he has had with (a) the European Commission and (b) his counterparts in EU member states on the possible reduction in the EFF budget for the UK that the Commission could impose for (i) 2007 and (ii) 2008; and if he will make a statement; 
(3) what representations he has made to the European Commission on the possibility of the 2007 European Fisheries Fund monies for the UK being carried over to future years; and if he will make a statement; 
(4) when he expects to know whether the European Commission will permit the UK to carry over the European Fisheries Fund for (a) 2007 and (b) 2008 until such time that the UK Operational Programme is approved; and if he will make a statement; 
(5) whether he plans to raise the issue of the European Fisheries Fund and the carry over of monies from (a) 2007 and (b) 2008, at the December Fisheries Council meeting; and if he will make a statement. 
Jonathan Shaw: I have discussed with Commissioner Borg the arrangements and timing for submitting the UK's National Strategic Plan and obtaining approval for the UK's Operational Programme. The National Strategic Plan has now been finalised, and I plan to formally submit this to the Commission later this month. My officials are working with those from the devolved administrations to complete the UK Operational Programme, in order to enable consultation to take place in early 2008. My officials will also be liaising closely with Commission officials to enable approval of the UK Operational Programme to be obtained as quickly as possible following formal submission.
The Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance closed at the end of 2007. To obtain access to the new European Fisheries Fund requires the approval by the European Commission of the UK's Operational Programme. I have made clear to Commissioner Borg the importance I attach to the UK having access to those funds in 2008 and subsequent years.
I have not had any discussions, or made any representations to either the European Commission, or other member states, regarding EFF budget reductions or allocations being carried forward, because it is not yet clear that any reductions will be imposed. I will support any Commission proposal, and seek the necessary EU Council and Parliament agreement, which would result in the 2007 allocation being carried forward.
Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will take steps to acquire mapping information on surface water flooding from (a) the Association of British Insurers and (b) local authorities with a view to identifying areas at highest risk of flooding. 
Mr. Woolas: The Environment Agency is investigating the development of maps showing areas at risk from surface water flooding. The agency has been liaising with a number of local authorities to ascertain the feasibility of collating data from a range of sources.
As the Environment Agency develops its proposals it will liaise with a number of other data owners who are expected to include the Association of British Insurers, with a view to incorporating all available appropriate data.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many fly-tipping incidents involved household waste were recorded by Flycapture in (a) 2004-05, (b) 2005-06 and (c) 2006-07 in each local authority in England. 
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will place in the Library a copy of the Flycapture Enforcement training package, including the module on the Regulation and Investigatory Power Act 2000. 
Shona McIsaac: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many incidents of fly-tipping were recorded in (a) North East Lincolnshire and (b) North Lincolnshire in each of the last five years. 
Joan Ruddock: I have arranged for a table to be placed in the Library of the House showing the number of fly-tipping incidents and prosecutions recorded by each local authority on Flycapture for 2004-05, 2005-06 and 2006-07. Data are only available from 2004 onwards.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many prosecutions were (a) undertaken and (b) successful in relation to fly-tipping incidents in 2006-07 in (i) absolute terms and (ii) as a percentage of the total number of fly-tipping incidents. 
In 2006-07, local authorities recorded an additional 378,974 enforcement actions, consisting of warning letters, statutory notices, fixed penalty notices, duty of care inspections, vehicle seizures and formal cautions. Excluding Liverpool city council, this figure was 172,042.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|